Thursday, March 31, 2005


My prayer cycle

I often write of my life as a child, I guess I was blessed with many memories, I remember being amazed when I met people when I was still in school, who couldn't remember who their first grade teacher was. I could still tell you every teacher I ever had, their names and describe what they looked like. There were so many books I loved to read, I mentioned Hans Christian Anderson, another would have been C.S. Lewis. I also loved fairytales and fantasy, who remember the book "Five Children and It" a book about brothers and sisters on a summer holiday and discovering a sand fairy who grants them one wish each day. But with every wish brings the children more trouble than happiness because they can't foresee the results of getting everything they ask for. Since I was a child I think I've always made my wants known through prayer. Like I was writing about saying No to Autumn yesterday, some of my prayers were No. I know now that prayer is more than just telling HIM what we want Him to do for us, or what we us to do for us. It's funny knowing He already knows what we need even before we ask for them. I think of the "Lords Prayer", I remember learning it when I was young, I also learned it in French. It's quite beautiful both ways. Once that prayer was a memory of words, but did I really know what it meant. Today it means more aout living and growing, trusting our relationships with all around us, rather than getting what we want from HIM. I guess as we grow in faith, our prayers will become less of a wish list and more of an intimate conversation. Mine still sound like a wish list many times. But as I look back, I'm glad He didn't grant many of my crazy wishes. Going to lunch, ya'll have a good day.

Children are the Kingdom of Heaven

When I was in the first grade our 1st grade class, did the play "The Emperor's New Clothes." I don't remember a bunch about it, but I remember our picture being in the paper. This Saturday will be the 200th anniversary of that wonderful storyteller Hans Christian Anderson who told the tales of "The Ugly Duckling" and "The Little Mermaid" The wonderful storyteller to kids everywhere. I grew up a kid that loved to read, I remember these stories, and Hans Christian Anderson was one of my favorites. I also remember the times that I was sick and had to visit the doctor, I remember these children's bible stories. From Adam and Eve all the way to when Jesus's coming back. So I guess I'm reminded that Jesus was a great friend of this child, me also. I remember the story of when the disciples got upset for people bringing their children to Him. And he said "Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them;for of such is the kingdom of Heaven", it amazes me I remember some of these stories, I think I learned more of the bible from these little children bible's than I have as an adult. This was one of my favorite pictures, I think this is about the time I started drawing women all the time.  Especially since this was supposed to be a picture of the first mother Eve.  Note to self, read your bible. Or just open it more. I think about us now in this age, how we value children. I only had a few people in my life that I really felt thought of me as a person of worth even as a child. My mother and my Papa. My Papa always talked to me like he valued me and my opinion. My aunt Daphne always did that too. I try and do that when I'm home, out of the mouth of babes, I hear it from Autumn and Eli all the time, and am looking forward to Ethan when he gets older also. I love watching them grow up even if it is from afar! Thought just came into my head, how we can have childlike faith when it comes to trusting our father. If I could picture something in my head right now it's of his arms lovingingly wrapped around each one of us like a child, His children! I also think of my little brother, my baby brother that I never got to hold. Many tears I watched my mom cry over him. I remember dreaming of him when I was little, but I can't really remember him, he was born between Sherry and I. I had dreams of holding him, I remember praying when I was little to hold him in my dreams.And in my dreams I held him. But just thinking thinking of a little baby in Heaven, wonder if my Mema and Nana are holding him. I remember so many tears from my mom as a little boy, she would tell me if it wasn't for you, I think my heart would die. But thank goodness she did have me, and then she had Sherry, and then Dena, and then Lance. I still see a fear in her eyes each time, when Autumn, Eli, and Ethan were born. I see her, and she thinks of little Daryl, our little angel that never grew up, that would be a baby angel forever in our hearts. I'll be glad to see him again. Ohh I'm getting kind of meloncholy today. Just random thoughts, lots of them.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Can Uncle Derek say NO?

It's funny, I know I'm just an uncle but a little constructive criticism, and I can feel my insides heat up. Children are so lovable and innocent-until they hear one word. NO! Mike told me the other day that Autumn doesn't hear that word from me enough, and I let her run wild. At first I was upset, I was feeling judged, I mean I'm just an uncle, aren’t I supposed to be the good one that always says yes, let Sherry, Lance, and Amanda be the No person, not me. But I've thought about it, and I guess it's good for her to hear it even from ole Uncle Derek. I don't always say yes, but you should see the pout when I don't say yes, her head goes down, shoulders down, it's not pretty. She knows how to work old Uncle Derek. I wonder if she knows how good she does have it, and how much her Rere does for her, I hope that she will always respect her, and realize all that she has done for her. Autumn really is a good girl, sometimes she's not a good girl too. When we went to Sister's funeral, I saw first hand how wild Autumn can get sometimes, man how does Sherry take it on those days, it was hard enough for me and I'm hardly ever there. I think she was just really tired, because the time I put her in the car she was out cold. I want to be the good uncle, the one that is always there for her if she needs me. But I guess sometimes saying no is actually being good. Or not letting her run all over me, sometimes I guess you got to show them who's really boss. She is, she thinks, lol.  I'll put a picture of one of her pouts later when I get home.  Today has been good to me, I've been blessed. How is it we can see so much of the beauty of the world in these days. I wish I could do it every day, just look at the wonder of creation and say, "What a wondeful God" Today I can see the beauty of each hour, I feel so grateful. Spring time is coming and it's changing of the seasons. I get this picture of my mother when she was a little girl, I wish I was there to watch, but when she was little she said in Spring she would pick flowers for her grandmother Ida Kilgore, and she would put them on her doorstep, and knock on the door, and quickly hide so she could watch her expression when she would pick them up in surprise.  Spring is a wonderful time.  Wonder what the first spring was like after the big flood! Bet Noah, and his family saw some beautiful sites.  We are all blessed, what a beautiful world that was made for us. 

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

Celtic Woman


I heard from a lot of you that you couldn't listen to this, but check out this site, I believe it gives you a chance to listen to the songs.

Monday, March 28, 2005


Here's John's Monday Photo shoot. 

He wanted us to do a photo shoot of our fine feathered friend.  These little guys walk the beaches every morning and evening.  They are always part of the beach.  Sandpipers

By Celia Thaxter (1872)

Across the narrow beach we flit,
   One little sandpiper and I,
And fast I gather, bit by bit,
   The scattered driftwood bleached and dry.
The wild waves reach their hands for it,
   The wild wind raves, the tide runs high,
As up and down the beach we flit,--
   One little sandpiper and I.

Above our heads the sullen clouds
   Scud black and swift across the sky;
Like silent ghosts in misty shrouds
   Stand out the white lighthouses high.
Almost as far as eye can reach
   I see the close-reefed vessels fly,
As fast we flit along the beach,--
   One little sandpiper and I.

I watch him as he skims along,
   Uttering his sweet and mournful cry.
He starts not at my fitful song,
   Nor flash of fluttering drapery.
He has no thought of any wrong;
   He scans me with a fearless eye:
Staunch friends are we, well tried and strong,
   The little sandpiper and I.

Comrade, where wilt thou be tonight,
   When the loosed storm breaks furiously?
My driftwood fire will burn so bright!
   To what warm shelter canst thou fly?
I do not fear for thee, though wroth
   The tempest rushes through the sky:
For are we not God’s children both,
   Thou, little sandpiper, and I?

··· Celia Thaxter ···



Sunday, March 27, 2005

Celtic Woman

Just listen to this CD if you want to hear the closest thing to angels.  This song is my favorite, Mike just gave it to me for Easter.  This song says it all.

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Weekend Assignment #52

Weekend Assignment #52: Congratulations! Hollywood is making a movie of your life, and you get to choose any actor you want to play you -- yes, even if they're dead (the things they can do with special effects!) Who do you choose and why?

Extra credit: Name the musician/band who will play the theme song to the movie.


Well if it's of my life there would need to be more than one actor unless it was Jim Carey, he's pretty good at playing just about any age.  But as a child it would be maybe the youngest Culkin kid, McCauley's younger brother.   My teenage years would have to be oh I don't know Shawn Cassidy, lol.  Then my now,  maybe Dr. Phil, just kidding, that's what they all call me at work.  I like maybe a young Yul Brenner playing me.,  The band I'm thiking would be maybe "The Eagles", or "Fleetwood Mac".

Saturday Morning

I got up earlier today than usual, probably because all I've done is sleep for a week it seems, I feel much better, although I can tell I'm still not 100%.  Wish  I'd gotten that flu shot now.  I hear the birds singing outside, Mike snoring on the inside, but mostly it's just quiet, the way I like it.  It seems I rarely get my quiet times as much as I used too, and I sure miss them.  I think I feel good enough to go take a run today,  I had planned on this past Monday to start back but I guess my body wasn't quite ready, maybe it needed more healing from the gate river run than I thought.  Blessings going out to everyone this weekend.  May you all rejoice in the triumph of the Lord on Easter!

Friday, March 25, 2005

Who's Struggling Out there?

I read a lot of journals, they are all very interesting to me, many I noticed are full of struggle, even mine. I'm at a point in my life where it seems I find myself praying please, no more struggles, I shouldn't be struggling like this! But why not? I answer back. Usually I say I can hear God talking by just asking a yes or no question, but this time, the voice in my mind was saying this. Not what I wanted to hear. Maybe it's pride, not sure. I think I thought by the time I turned 37 I'd be more of where I wanted to be, and less struggling. But here I am 37, where I am supposed to be and struggling. Not a bad struggle, just the ordinary. I read other struggles much harder than mine, but with those struggles I still feel faith, I still feel strenght, and it only makes me stronger. That story comes to mind I've read so many times about the man and the cocoon of the butterfly, can't seem to find it, but I'm sure if you've read it you know what I mean. Maybe I'm just getting butterfly wings like Autumn got in her fairy tale. Sometimes the struggle is exactly what we need to become what God intends us to be. Hope everyone has a blessed weekend and a blessed Easter!

Back to work on Good Friday

Well I'm feeling much better, not 100%, but better, it's good Friday.  I just realized Autumn's birthday is on Easter Sunday.  More than 2000 years ago in Jerusalem, Pontius Pilate commanded that a placard be placed on the cross that read: "Jesus of Nazareth, the Kind of the Jews."  Perhaps Pilate was trying to put fear among the people and discourage them from crowning their own king. 

King of the Jews.  Was it an original thought at the time?  Perhaps it had been introduced when the wise men asked, "Where is He who has been born King of the Jews?  Those Wise Men sought fulfillment of this promise:  "For unto us a Child is born...: the government will be upon His shoulder.  And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father. Prince of Peace"  They believed Jesus was this Child.  Later, when Christ was crucified, some jeered, "If You are the Son of God, come down from the cross", they wanted to see if Jesus really was King.   But Jesus did not come down.  The true meaning of the cross is that "Christ died for our sins"  He paid the penalty of our sins has made God's forgiveness possible.  Those who accept God's forgiveness and ask Jesus to be their Savior and Lord can have only one appropriate response-to serve Him.  He is the King of our lives.  When I was home last week, I noticed everyone I loved was wearing a cross, everyone, even when I got home, Mike had his cross neclace on.  Looks like something was trying to get my attention.  I think I want a cross neclace now.

Thursday, March 24, 2005


I've looked back in happiness at all I've been through and all my experiences.  I'm recounting my experiences to break some stereotypes.  I want people to know that being gay and finding love is possible.  We meet the problems of everyday living and find ways to establish trust and love.   I've met someone and am very happy to share something so wonderful.

This is the paragraph I used to describe my journal but it is rare that I speak of the person that I share my life with every day.  So I thought it was time to let you in on a little bit about this person that is a big part of my life, and soon we will even be living together, as soon as we can figure a few things out, certain dates.  But all in all we already do live together.  I think I've only spent a couple days away from him or he me in many months.   I write about many things in my journal, my thoughts, my dreams, but yet somehow I seem to leave out or not really leave out, but maybe not stress this person, and how much they mean to me.  A friend told me today in an email how important it is for her to be very honest about the joy and love that she has with her partner.  "It honors that love, teaches people that we are little different from them in our wants and needs (which is a HUGE concept for some).  Well I have found that love and today is the day I thought I'd say it, in an entry.  Mike means the world to me.  I've been sick the last few days, and him being there for me while I was sick, to make sure I was taking my medicine when I needed too, or making me some water or 7-up, or just putting up with my whining.  Today I was extra irratible.  Everything just seemed to be coming in on me, and I just seemed to be pushing, Mike included.  Maybe it has been fear that I don't talk about the one that I love, fear of judgement, fear of many things, I've made so many friends on here in J-land, and I guess I thought if I stayed away from my extreme close personal life I would be ok.  Anyway.  I have someone special, and I love looking into his eyes when he's smiling, sometimes I can even read his mind and tell what he's thinking when I'm looking at them.  He always hugs me before I leave, or I hug him before I leave.  I just wanted to say thank you Mike, for being in my life, and for all that you mean to me.  And also wanted to say I'm sorry for being so irritable while I've been sick.  It will get better.  And remember it's not all about you, it's all about ME!  Just kidding.  I love you!  Ok, now this means I can tell everyone on the internet about how  clutter drives me crazy, and me picking my toes drives you crazy.  Thanks for so many things, for being proud of me when I finished that last step of the Gate, and waiting there with the camera and taking pictures.  Thanks for being you!

Wednesday, March 23, 2005


This is the only picture I could find of one of their birthday parties we had for Mema and Sister.  I unfortunately don't remember going to many of them.  Because I was always way down here in Jacksonville.  I loved their matching shirts.  Their cakes was cute too, it was two hearts made into one.  I'm starting to feel better.  Think I may make it to work tomorrow.



Still Home Sick but feeling much better

  Well I'm feeling  alot better, can get out of bed, and have been able to eat some, throat still sore, but other than that I feel good besided the runny nose. Mike has been a good nurse to me.  I think I've slept for two days straight.   I see my pictures from the gate river run came in, if you want to check them out it's

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Home sick

Yep, here I sit, sick, at least I can get out of bed today, yesterday, I didn't even make it up except to take my medicine and go to the bathroom, I've got some kind of upper respiratory thing going on,  seems there were a lot of people with the same thing at the funeral, and I was just going around hugging and kissing everyone.  Next time I'll wear a mask.. I do so hate being sick, my thoughts are foggy, and I'm just irratible.  Ok guess I'm through whining!  I'll be better soon.  I'm sure going back to bed now.


Thursday, March 17, 2005

Most outrageous Fairy Tale

Here's mine tell me what you think?

Over at Judi's    The subject for the essay will be:



My Mema's twin sister passed away last night.  I'm sure I've told this story before about after my Mema died, there was a bird that kept singing and tapping at the window, that night I dreamed it was my Mema and she was telling me she wanted us to come to the window so she could see us. Later the same week a bird flew in my chimney and into my house, I had been having a hard time because I felt like I didn't get to say goodbye to her. Well this bird flew in and I laughed and called it Mema, then I got scared the bird was going to hurt itself flying around in the house, so I opened the front door and walked out of the room. Came back and the bird was gone. So I lay on my bed and thought about Mema, and as I almost fell asleep I looked up and on my dresser the bird just sat looking at me. I stood up walked to the bird, it didn’t flinch, I grabbed the bird and walked to the front door opened it and let the bird fly, and as it flew away I said "Goodbye Mema". I felt much better after that, and a few cries here and there. Well this morning another bird was singing at my window as I awoke, this time I opened the screen to see, but I could only hear it, I said sing to me little bird, Mema came to mind, and then Sister, her twin sister. As soon as I thought of Sister I knew, then the phone rang and it was my cousin Vicki telling me the Meme had died, they called their grandma Meme, and we called ours Mema, they called our Mema, "Sister", and we called their's "Sister", and the two of them called each other "Sister". Yes it got confusing around the house when we all got together. We had wonderful times when we all got together, Our grandparents owned a river house together. That's what we called it the "River House" I remember as a little boy playing with all my cousins, and watching my Mema and Sister as they would laugh together and cook together. And big wonderful meals we would enjoy, I think that the kitchen was almost as big as the river house and you should of seen the kitchen table. Uncle Leroy and my Papa would sit out on the dock fishing, they loved to fish, all us kids would swim in the river or they would take us out on the boat and waterski. Good times! Sister and her husband Leroy Graves owned a Drive In theater in Perry, Florida. It was known for it's concession stand for miles around, the best hamburgers around. My dad even said it was one of the first places to serve pizza years ago. It's now a restaurant called the Drive In, I remember me and my cousin Vicki sneaking riding our bikes around while everyone watched movies. Or sneaking around the back and trying to watch a rated R movie once, but we got caught, or her sister Kathy and all her beauty contests we went too.  Then there was my cuz Susan, (Susu) when we were little and never call her that when we got bigger.  I remember her always making me feel special when I was around her.  I loved all three of my cousins.  They were all very special too me.  Now they have their own families and beautiful ones at that.  I miss our old times.  The Drive In was always my favorite place to go in the summer, maybe that's one of the reasons I love movies so much, because they were such a BIG thing to such a little boy as me. Sister loved to cook as much as Mema, and she loved us to eat. I remember even when we were sick with the stomach flu, she believed if you would eat a grilled cheese sandwich you would feel better. Many wonderful memories, but my favorite was just to watch the two of them together, they were so fun to be around, especially if you were lucky enough to be alone with just the two of them. They would laugh and make you laugh till your stomach hurt. They were very close, as close as two twins could be I guess. They had that special bond. Mema always knew if it was Sister on the phone. The phone would ring and she'd say I bet it's "Sister", and sure enough it would be and they would talk for hours. I bet they didn't have a single secret from each other. Well we all loved you "Sister", but as I walked out of the house today, thinking I would see some bird singing, instead I saw two identical birds walking across the telephone wires over my car, one after the other in a line. And a smile came too my face, maybe a tear too. Because now I know they are back together. Eloise Eula and Louise Beaula.  Now they are with the ones they loved and have gone before them.  My Mema with my Papa and my little brother Daryl, Sister with her Leroy, who always called her Beautiful, and her son Roy.  Also both of them with the mom they didn't remember since they were only three when she died.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Our little Butterfly

Over at Judi's    The subject for the essay will be:


How Autumn Got Butterfly Wings

Once Upon a time in an enchated city in the clouds there was a lovely princess named Autumn who loved to wander far from the palace in billowy clouds, by getting on the slide that took her down into her father's beautiful botanical gardens on Earth.  She loved the palace on the clouds and her father.  But she also enjoyed the nature of this garden on this place her father called Earth.  There she would find something natural to catch her fancy and sit for hours enjoying it, there was no color in her kingdom, everything was white.  Whether it be playing in the lily pad pond with it's beautiful flowers growing up out of the water, or just resting in a meadow with a gentle breeze blowing or playing with the  little animals she loved, all of them so magical and beautiful.

One day the beautiful princess happened upon a sparkling pond, in the garden surrounded by gnarled trees covered with hanging moss. Full of lily pads that she so loved. So she found the biggest one she could find and she decided to take off on an adventure. The entire area was shadowed in silence as much as it was shadowed from the sun. It struck her as a magical place and she entered quietly so as not to disturb the profound silence.

The pond was a lovely blue, littered with lily pads, birds of exquisite colors sang in the trees as if welcoming her, and, perhaps best of all, were all the flowers and fragrances and colors of violet and yellow, in the mist of all the abudance of life. The princess climbed onto one of the lilypads and decided to take off on an adventure. As she glided over the beautiful pond with the blooming flowers coming from the water underneath her lilypad, she was overcome with happiness. Then she saw it, this beautiful little ladylike creature, delicate with great big beautiful wings of all colors. Could this be an angel like she had heard of in her kingdom in the clouds. So beautiful!  In her mind she knew she wanted wings like that. How easy it would be to fly from flower to flower, and she wouldn't have to worry about that long climb back up the stairs when she heard her father calling her. She still would enjoy the slide down and when she got to the bottom she could fly off.

The princess climbed off the lily pad on an island in the middle of the pond and sat on the cool grass overlooking the pond and the beauty of this garden on Earth. She was overcome by the beauty of it all, and also the beauty was overcome with her beauty. The big fish with the little moustaches swam carelessly beneath her, and swam up to spash her, she saw little heads peaping out from shelllike colors all over. And over on a lilypad much like hers she noticed a green creature with big eyes on a lily pad almost as green as he was. She decided to smile at the creature with the big eyes that were looking at her so intently, almost questioning her.Preview

As soon as she smiled, in one big jump the green creature was right next to her, it was so quick it almost took her breath away, what strong legs he must have. With wonder the creature asked, "What are you", in a strange sounding voice. "I am princess Autumn, from the castle in clouds", Who are you?"  she said almost laughing. "I am Frog, magical king of the lilypads, he said in his deep voice. She laid back on the green grass beneath her hair and laughed whole heartedly, never hearing the sound or hearing this thing called a Frog made her laugh, and laugh hard. The king frog dove lightly into the water near her after hearing this sound that he had never heard, this beautiful sound. She looked at him with her big sky blue wide eyes. "Thank you for that sound", I've never heard anything as beautiful, as I said I'm a magic frog, and for that sound I will grant you one wish".

In her heart she already knew her wish! She said, "I want wings like those beautiful creatures", pointing to the little ladylike delicate flying. He said, "Oh the butterfly", why of course I can grant you that wish." All of sudden she felt a flutter in her back, and out from her back sprung these beautiful butterfly wings. In wide eyed amazement she looked at king frog and thanked him because this is just what she had wanted on her trip to this little island on the pond when she firstsaw this beautiful thing he called a butterfly. "No! Thank you said king frog, for your beauty, and your sound. Before she knew it King frog had jumped away from lily pad to lily pad, until she couldn't see him anymore. The sun shone down on her and she saw a rainbow, her little wings knew it was time to fly! Up and away she went! Flying through the colors of the rainbow and sliding down the other side, and flying over the water as she hit the bottom of the rainbow slide. She flew from flower to flower tasting a little of each one and absorbing the smells. What a wonderful thing these little wings are. She knew she was a princess but all of a sudden she knew what she was born for.

A blinding light filled the clearing, and shone down across the whole garden, and she looked up into the light and her father saw her heart and knew what she wanted. She became a butterfly. She still wore her little crown on her head, and everytime she saw King frog, she flew by and gave him a kiss. Somedays she would still fly to the light so she could see her Father. But he was still with her every day.  





I still couldn't get over how big Autumn had gotten this weekend.  She has really become a little lady.  I was going to put this on my picture of the day Journal  but I'm doing the ABC challenge, and I'm on D, I'm going through all my pictures maybe I'll find something else.  Anyway this is a picture I took of Autumn on the beach and put with a picture from the Chinese Garden in Seattle from last year and added some little butterfly wings, since Sherry loves butterflies so much. 

Storm in my mind

My mind seems to be on trivial things today, it's not busy enough at work today I guess, on my lunch break I had a comic book in my trunk of my car and started to read it, I started laughing, funny how somehow childish trivia can calm my nerves. I've always loved comics since I was little. Another one of my escapes. There's nothing wrong with comic books, and all of us need an occasional escape, books, magazines, and other media are the primary influence on our lives. I'm thinking, yes, that's me too. I'm also thinking how foolish! We have in our hands the Word of Life-the Book that tells us how to know God and live abundantly. I'm ashamed to say I don't read it as much as I've read my comic books lately, which sadens me. Maybe I should make a comic book of bible stories. It's my fault, and something is lacking in my heart since I havn't been picking it up, I should do a internet search on the bible sometime, I'm sure there are many sites with stories out there. I want this to be something I do more of. I want a desire for His word and a hunger to taste His goodness every day. I'm not sure what I'm saying, I do taste all the wonders everyday, I guess I'm just saying, I still feel I'm missing so much, truths and richness of His word, that I still don't understand, gems beyond compare! :) I do own a Bible, so what keeps me from making the time to read it. O.K. Maybe the storm in my mind will pass!

Cool site for the Gate River run


this will give you an idea of what the run was like.  Very cool site.

What I saw

Sometimes like this morning I wonder how grateful we are for the wonders of the world that God has created for us as our home in time. Even though every time I turn on the television and watch the news I see evil and pain. Even with this I know the world is full of beautiful things that dazzle our senses. Early some mid morning take a walk, mine was just down on the river, this morning it was windy, but I could get a sense of what's coming and looking forward to the summer mornings and their fragrances. I think about all the loveliness in my life this weekend. Autumn here all of us out at the beach, all people I love and care about in the salty air of the Ocean.-a faint glimpse of heaven's glory. Years ago I stood outside on a high snow covered mountain. As far as I could see, all the peaks were covered and glistening with snow. It was an overwhelming spectacle of life and what it has too offer. Beauty much of it is here for us. Beautiful but yet still just a glimpse of heaven's glory. Then there is music, I'm not sure what your favorites are but I feel like I'm in heaven with so many different types of music, even Classical music. Can you imagine what the sound of angels will sound like? I had a beautiful weekend, but guess this morning I'm thinking of something even more beautiful. Something I can't even imagine, but know in my heart to be so much more. I think of how hard it is for some people, even myself to open my heart. There have been so many hurts and pains in our lives, that it's hard. I'm just happy I have so much to enjoy in this life, and look forward to what is after as well. Wish I could sit here and write all day, but I am at work, so better get back to it, Happy Tuesdays to everyone!  Oh and correction to my group rank, not sure why but yesterday when I put in my name it said I was first in my group rank, but I think the website is off, because I found plenty of other 37 year olds with better times than me.  So I wasn't number one in any group, but I finished.  That was all I was wanting to do,  well I wanted to make better time than last year, missed that by 4 minutes, but there is always next year.

Sunday, March 13, 2005

Gate River Run

Well yep, I finished the run.  It was a beautiful day.  My time wasn't that great.  I think it was 1 hour and 49 minutes.   I think over 9000 people ran it.    I'll be posting more pictures later.  This is me right after the finish line walking it off.  Sherry, Mark, and Autumn came down and stayed at the beach.  Saturday after the race we went down to the landing and ate Mexican.  Autumn had fun running around in the fountain with green water.  We soaked our feet and my feet were aching in the cold St. John's river, Mike and I took her to the toy store, then we went home to rest and recover from the race, and then Mark and Sherry cooked for us, Salmon, and sausage, and lots of little other things.  We all had fun, and today spent the day in the sun.  Sherry's friend Katie came down with her little boy Drew also and we all had fun at the beach, Autumn tried flying her barbie kite, she's getting so big, I can't believe she'll be 5 at the end of the month.  The rest of the day Mike and I have just rested and took it easy.  It's been a nice weekend.

Our Friend Mike's Birthday

Our friend Mike's birthday was two weekends ago, Just got around to putting the pictures on.  We had a really great time.  It was a Hawaiian theme if you notice the lei's and the grass skirts.  I got to see an old friend that I havn't seen in years.  Scott, who was one of my first friends when I moved here to Jacksonville.  Fun was had by all.  Actually I had way to much fun, they said I was the life of the party.  All I rembember was drinking a little too much punch, Mai Tai's.  The next day everyone was telling me I was telling them "I love you",  I don't usually drink that much but when I do I get affectionate.

The Highland Games

Forgot to load all the pictures from the highland games.  We sure had fun, But here they are.

Friday, March 11, 2005

Eli's number 1


The judging is in and the pictures are on.  Eli won 1st place in the American Baby Contest, that I entered him in, think I'm going to enter Autumn and Ethan this month.

Autumn and the wave

The Missing...


A grandmother was walking along on the beach with her young grandson when a giant wave washed over the beach. She looked and her grandson was gone, carried away by the wave.

She fell down on her knees and began praying vigorously.

"Lord PLEASE send my grandson back! PLEASE!!!"

In the next few seconds another giant wave washed over the beach and there lie her grandson, stunned but otherwise fine.

The grandmother looked at him then looked up to heaven and said,


"He was wearing a hat!"

I read this and it reminded me of a story, I may have told it before. but Autumn had come to visit me at the beach and we were enjoying a beautiful day on the beach, and Autumn with me will go out pretty far as long as she's on my shoulders.  Well we were out a good ways when I saw this wave coming and I knew it was going to hit hard, and she was going to get wet, so I just held on, well the wave was harder than I thought and it knocked us both hard and I even went down, I jumped up and she was nowhere in sight, my heart stopped, and in a flash I said God help me, I just put my hand down in the water in front of me and up she came, she was the first thing that hit my hand, it was all a flash but seemed like a lifetime.  I pulled her up and the first thing she said was "Everything went green", a little in shock we walked back to the shore, her back on my shoulders.  When we got to shore she looked up at me and said "I think that wave wanted me."  I was just happy it gave her back!  I think this was one of the scariest moments in my life.  And it only lasted less than 10 seconds.


Thursday, March 10, 2005

Step by Step, Little by Little

I got an email from a internet friend that inspired me. It started with "I believe in one thing in this world...and it is that I control my life by the choices I make.... My talent comes from years of dedicating my time to music, art, photography & good health. No one can give me any of those things but "ME" I hear people giving excusses all the time of why they cant do what they love or they wish they would have gone a diferent route in life. Its never to late to get started and it doesnt come all at once! But as my saying goes... a journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.....its up to you to take that 1st step and follow it though the full 1,000 miles and beyond. Make a plan and tackle a little bit each day. Its the only way.....Soon you will be on your way if you realize that your strength and encouragment comes from within yourself!!! JUST DO IT!!!!!!!"

Pretty inspirational huh. Makes me think of many things, I know I think a litle diffrently, I think of our forefathers and the land they crossed and the hard work they suffered for their family, and also for us. Here we are! What are we going to do. I know I'm the worst about putting things off. There was a story I remember when I was little about a little boy trying to clear a path with his little shovel in front of his house, he was trying to build a mountain or clear something, memory fades me now. But building a mountain sounds good.  Someone saw him a saw what a big task that was involved in doing this and such a little boy trying to accomplish it. So he asked him "How can someone as small as you expect to finish a task big as this?" The little boy looked up at the man and said "Little by little, that's how!" Then he went back to his shoveling. This story comes back because, I'm still doing it little by little, sometimes it may feel like I'm not getting anywhere. I start to think of the little kid in me. Always go back to that little kid huh. Maybe it was the years of Transactional Analysis. I remember how my "adult" self taunted the weak "child". And still does on occasion. Little by little, seems my answers to my questions keep on coming day by day, step by step, little by little.

I'm not lead year by year, or even day by day, but step by step mypath unfolds. Lord help me in my journey.

P.S. And in my run on Saturday!

Tuesday, March 8, 2005

Happy Birthday Dena

I've been sitting here thinking of all the years we've shared and all the wonderful times.  Dena, I can only think of you with love on your birthday and wish you everything that brings you happiness today and always!  Happy Birthday my dear sweet sister.  I hope your day has been special just like you. Your truly blessed.  I'm so happy that Eli won the beautiful baby contest on   I'm so glad I entered him in it.  God had really blessed us.  Can't wait till the 11th when they post his picture.  I'm going to enter some of Ethan next time.

I think about our lives, the path's we've taken, day by day , we always take, no one's been there before us.  It's our journey we make.  As we travel this path, and it's crossroads we try. There are side roads and hills really steep and some quite high. Also pitfalls, and tribulations, Just waiting to en-caputrue us so we choose our path's carefully and consider what we should do.   It's built with us to climb every hill, look around each bend, and to always travel right on, Up until the journey's very end.  There are faces to wave you on, and make you happy in every way, yours has always been one of those faces, for me and many others. And a face which will most surely  make us want to really truly stay.  But at the end of this road we leave these all far behind.  That's when the angels are there waiting for us.  Well I think our family was lucky enough to have one while we were here on Earth and that's you.  There are some people that truly make you feel close to Heaven, and  you are one of those people. As children we've shared so many truly good things.  If we turned back time what joy this would bring.  I'm glad that we've shared such special love, family care.  I also thank God for all the wonderful times we share now.  With Ethan, Eli, and Autumn.  Thank you dear Dena for each day we've shared.  This is my special wish, just that this is your special day and one of the best you've ever had, Happy Birthday!

Your big brother Derek

 I love you!


Monday, March 7, 2005

Under the weather

Today hasn't been my best, I woke up at 5:30 to hit he gym, and do some strenth training on my legs, but was having some serious cramping and abdominal pains.  So got dressed went to work and got sick the time I got there, so off to the doctor, and found out I have a stomach flu, so they put me on fernigan, which made me sleep from 9:00 am till almost 7.   Feeling a lot better, had some cambells soup and a 7 up,  Mike has been nursing me pretty good.  He got a new sewing machine and has been busy making things.  Well I think I'm about to try and hit the sack again, so I can make it to work.  On a good note.  I entered Eli in a photo contest, and he won first place.  I'll send you guys the website when they get his picture enterered.  This will be  a great present for Dena tomorrowCan't wait till they post them on the 11th.

Tuesday, March 1, 2005

Childlike Faith

When we were at the Highland games, many things caught my eyes, the animals, the bagpipes, the color and richness of all the kilts, many senses were being tested, smell of all the foods, sound of all the music. Then I noticed the children, the petting zoo, the clowns, the balloons, I felt like a child myself, I remember being this age, and how much I would enjoy this, so I started trying to see the whole thing in childlike eyes, and enjoy, like Autumn would, or Eli. I had a great time too. I think Mike really enjoyed himself also, he even got me to take a bite of haggus. Funny how some things can make even us as adults childlike, can you think of some of those things? I remember when I was in Austria and all the snow, me and a friend I met on the trip, I can't even remember her name now, went out and made a snowman, just like two little kids. All that snow and I didn't see a single snowman. So there we were in all our winter jackets and scarfs, and hats playing in the snow, it was great. Snow probably brings out the child in a lot of people. The beach is that way for me too. I think that's why I love the beach so much. Many of my favorite childhood memories have to do with water, or the beach. I'm the same way with almost any body of water, even swimming pools. Maybe that's how we are supposed to be. Childlike faith. I look and listen to Autumn and Eli, and there is so much of it. I know how I think so many times, nothing seems possible at the moment, think back of the little Derek, he thought anything was possible anything can happen. I had a confidence in God to unlock the doors of Heaven and He even let me take a peek. I want that faith again, the faith I had as a child, the faith I know my niece and nephew have. How does the saying go, "Faith shines brightest in that of a childlike heart".